Ty Montgomery was on the field for 90 percent
of the Packers offensive plays in Week 1.
Grab a Helmet
Javorius Allen v. CLE: Your
league mates are busy scrambling after Tarik Cohen and Kerwynn
Williams, most likely, but for my money, Buck Allen is just as
interesting a waiver wire target and probably comes cheaper. The
former Trojan wasnít even a consideration in fantasy circles
a week ago, but got thrust into a prominent role in the Ravensí
offense after Danny Woodhead pulled a hammy early in the win against
Cincinnati. How prominent? Only four RBs carried the football
more in Week 1. Game flow definitely dictated some of that, but
what most intrigues me about Allen is what he didnít demonstrate
at all last Sunday, his pass-catching chops. He tallied 45 receptions
as a rookie (2015) and even authored a 12-reception day against
Miami in Week 13 of that season. Heís not an auto-start
but I like him to get plenty of work against the Browns this Sunday.
Mack v. ARZ or Chris
Carson v. SF: The short list of sure thing running
backs is one name shorter in Week 2 (David Johnson), so itís time
to start thinking about next-man-up options before your league
mates do. The Colts think they have a gem in the training camp
darling Mack, a fourth-round selection in Aprilís draft. Though
he wasnít terrific last Sunday in the blowout loss to the Rams,
he did manage 11 touches (same as starter Frank Gore) and scored
once (should have been twice). Meanwhile, Carson, a seventh round
pick, ended up being the Seahawksí most productive back against
Green Bay (six carries for 39 yards) and is rumored to be in line
for more attention against San Franciscoís iffy run stoppers.
If you lost Johnson and werenít able to nab this weekís waiver
wire darlings, think about these two under-the-radar rooks. They
could definitely surprise.
Ty Montgomery @ ATL: Iím
biased, yes, but it still puzzles me Montgomery received so little
love from prospective GMs and pundits heading into this season.
Sure, he was trying to pull off one of the more unusual position
switches in NFL history. Sure, the Packers drafted three RBs,
ostensibly to identify a more traditional workhorse and/or complementary
piece. Sure, heíd only tallied a single 15+ carry performance
in his brief career at the position. Actually, make that two now.
Facing arguably the best defense heíll face all year, the
former wide receiver notched 19 carries, 54 rushing yards, a score,
and 39 more yards receiving in the Packís victory, the kind
of all-around performance folks like me expected when we drafted
him. Heíll have some ups and downs along the way, certainly,
but Iím betting on more of the former than the latter. Start
him against Atlanta Sunday night.
Grab a Gatorade
Jonathan Stewart v. BUF: 30ís
the new 60 for NFL backs, but somebody forgot to tell J-Stew,
whoís been plying his trade in Charlotte now for ten years.
The former Duck (GO DUCKS!!!) hasnít played a full season
since 2011, but if you take out two especially injury-plagued
years, 2012 and 2013, heís been remarkably consistent, averaging
about 9.5 points/game. I think he could post those kinds of numbers
again this season, even with Christian McCaffrey in the fold,
but there will be better matchups than this Sundayís. Sean
McDermott, Carolinaís former defensive coordinator, has
reclaimed the defensive front Rex Ryan tried to wreck by reverting
to a 4-3 scheme, a more natural fit for the talent in place. The
results through several preseason games and one real one have
been quite promising. I like McCaffrey lots more than Stewart
this week, even though the latterís a red zone hog.
Adrian Peterson v. NE: ADís
Minnesota homecoming was an unmitigated dud last Monday night,
punctuated by a weird sideline exchange with coach Sean Payton
that quickly made the rounds on the interwebs. It certainly looked
heated (though both parties deny it) and thereís no mistaking
the look on Petersonís face: exasperated. I guess I would
be too if I only managed six total touches in such a personally
meaningful contest. To be fair, Coach Paytonís Belichick-ian
running back usage seemed too clever by half, though maybe heís
discovered something Peterson simply hasnít or canít
accept, that heís more once great than great at this stage
of his career. Drew Brees will be slinging it all afternoon to
keep up with Tom Terrificís Pats, so leave the former Viking
on your bench. He wasnít very involved Monday as a runner
but even less so as a receiver (one target).
Carlos Hyde @ SEA: Iíve
always liked Hyde’s size and skill set, but he seems like
the type of back who will turn out decent career numbers only
to disappear, probably sooner rather than later, into running
back oblivion. His timing is mostly to blame for this relative
lack of notoriety/relevance as the once-proud Niners have fallen
on hard times of late. Save for an 8-8 campaign his rookie season,
the last of the Jim Harbaugh era, San Francisco has won only seven
games in two seasons, only four of which the oft-injured Buckeye
has participated in. They don’t figure to make it eight
and five, respectively, against a tough/angry Seattle team Sunday.
Hyde was efficient in the Week 1 loss to Carolina (15 touches
for 77 total yards) and could be again. I suspect he and the Niners
will fall desperately behind, however, limiting overall upside.
Sit him down.